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Inspiring stories of people making a difference

The Power Of One

By Garvin Thomas
|  Friday, Dec 14, 2012  |  Updated 10:30 AM PDT
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A high school teacher once did a very nice thing for Robert Freeman. He was so grateful, he promised one day to pay back the favor. Years later, Robert did that by leaving a lucrative high tech career to become a high school teacher himself. What Robert didn't know, however, was that was just the first of his good deeds.

A high school teacher once did a very nice thing for Robert Freeman. He was so grateful, he promised one day to pay back the favor. Years later, Robert did that by leaving a lucrative high tech career to become a high school teacher himself. What Robert didn't know, however, was that was just the first of his good deeds.

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It was raining during lunchtime at Los Altos High School. A group of five students had taken refuge in a corner of teacher Robert Freeman's classroom to eat their lunches.

Robert says he tried not to eavesdrop, but couldn't help hearing the students complain about school, the economy, their prospects for college ... pretty much everything. He said to them, "You should hear yourselves. You sound so cynical."

"But the world is pretty messed up," the students responded.

"You're right," Robert told them, "so what are you going to do about it?"

That conversation happened in 2006. Since then Robert, those students, and thousands more like them have done quite a bit about "it". They started a non-profit called One Dollar For Life.

Asking for just a single dollar from other students, they have managed to build fourteen schools for children in the developing world.

And, Robert believes, that is just the beginning.

Watch Garvin Thomas' story above.

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